Product Type: HTC Smartphone
Newest Review: ... but the main ones that come with the phone make life so much easier. Thanks to HTC Sense built in, customising your home screen is as eas... more
The HTC Sensation makes sense
Member Name: costas1
Advantages: Excellent all round smart phone, wide range of features good quality apps,
Disadvantages: built in FM radio signal rather dissapointing
In the past, I have owned a number of basic phones that were used just to make phone calls and to send text messages. Having recently bought the Sony Ericsson Xperia x8 smart phone I had started to get used to a reasonably good level of internet services through the Wi-Fi facility. However on the HTC Sensation smart phone, I soon found myself being able to do much more. This HTC sensation does much more and better. It is also well known that HTC and Apple iPhone 4 at the moment are highly rated corporations where brand prestige is very closely matched.
There is a pre-set list to choose your phone network service provider. People can configure the internet access and internet applications, such as Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. There is an auto synchronise data and time setting. Getting started with the phone is a straightforward process. Once the phone is set up to use, the screen/the user interface displays the time at the top of the screen, and has shortcuts to the Google app store market. There is also a tutorial to help you get the most out of your phone.
The HTC smart phone is very sleek and has a very appealing design. It is uncomplicated and un fussed. It is user friendly and inviting to be used. Prior to using the phone, I researched the various features and the cost of the phone and had formulated a certain level of expectation.
The HTC Sensation has quality plastic and a nice rubbery feel to the cover. The cover of the phone has a charcoal and gunmetal grey colour. The phone has a sliver power button and a volume button. At the top of the phone there is a silver colour mesh design speaker cover. The screen size is quite large at 4.3 inches and it makes full use of the size of the phone. The display screen is so big, it makes the phone appear to have slim edges and it has a well designed user interface. To the bottom of the mobile phone, there are 4 touch screen buttons. The first one is the home button which displays the desktop. The second button shows the settings of the phone, the third button is the back button of the system and the final button is the internet search.
These 4 buttons are fixed to the front of the phone. They are integrated to the front of the fascia. The build quality is very good and it feels like a solid phone. The camera is fixed to the back of the phone. It is easy to handle the HTC Sensation mobile phone due to its size and shape. The design is slim and easy to handle, and would fit comfortably into most peoples hands. It does not feel heavy or bulky, nor does it feel flimsy. In addition I found moving around with the phone to be quite convenient as the product fitted in my pocket, so this allayed my initial fears regarding the size of the product.
The textured sections of the back of the phone provide a non slip and smooth feel.
In shape the screen looks like an iPhone4.
The buttons on the phone used for making calls are bigger than the HTC legend. This makes it very easy to make phone calls and text. In addition this also makes it easier to correctly input the telephone numbers.
The phone has an auto standby feature of about 5 seconds of idle use. There are battery saving options which I found useful. In assessing the battery life, I have found that it varies depending on usage. On days of light usage, the phone lasted a whole day before I needed to charge it up again, but when I used maps and used the Internet apps a lot, then I did need to charge the battery more frequently. I was impressed by the battery life on this phone and my expectations were beaten on this measure.
The HTC Sensation uses the Android 2.3.4 operating system and I have found it to be quite powerful and after 14 days of usage there are no phases of slowness, and I would definitely say that the system as a whole runs very smoothly indeed. The phone does go on stand by itself after approximately 5 seconds of idle use. The applications are very easy to access the most used and specifically all of the pre-installed features. Another thing I liked regarding the Operating System is that people can multi-task between functions such as listening to the radio and browsing the internet, or checking their e-mails and listening to music. The Operating System and the system as a whole does not get hot which is another really important factor in choosing this phone.
Furthermore the phone also has a lock screen which is easy to open but I find this a bit unnecessary.
Phone Call Quality
I highly rate the call quality due to the good audible volume and with clear reception as well. I made a number of phone calls and was delighted with the phones capabilities. The speaker and audio device is located at the top of the phone and this enables good communication over the telephone. The media volume button is located to the top left and this produces a Hi-Fi media sound. For a mobile phone this is loud. The good thing about the silver volume button on the phone is that it can be adjusted conveniently.
Regarding the Internet, the browser displays Google within a few seconds and the page results are displayed quickly. I would state that from my experience that using Wi-Fi proved to be faster than using the Vodafone 3G services. The Internet browser displays websites very easily and in a rich format, making it easy to read. The font size when reading the websites is big enough to read without generally needing to zoom in. I would also say that pages load up very easily and fluidly. The speed is fast loading and is easy to navigate. The Internet browsing on the HTC Sensation is almost if not as good as browsing from a good quality desktop machine.
Quite simply there are around 50 or so pre-installed apps which all adds and enhances the user experience. The apps are displayed alphabetically and all of which are symbolized and easy to access. There were a few apps I downloaded separately in order to obtain quality Internet radio service. Generally the range of apps is quite comprehensive and covers a wide spectrum of media. I shall provide a run down of most of the apps from here in.
The main apps on the main desktop are 1) Messages 2) Mail 3) Internet 4) Camera 5) Market and 6) Show me app. Also included are the time and weather shortcuts. Simply tap the time displayed and it shows the local time and other times in different cities. Slightly below the time is the weather app which in my view is excellent. It shows the latest weather. Included in the weather app is the real feel of the weather, which is a great feature.
The message app is of very good quality because people can send messages using a good quality interface. I was able to send short text messages within seconds.
Regarding the Internet app, I was able to visit my favourite websites and able to access the Internet quickly. It displays WebPages really nicely. When restarting the Internet the browser displays the last page that was browsed. Regarding Google searches, the browser does have a list of probable match of the searches.
Regarding the Android market it requires the user to sign in with his or her google mail account and after that you can download free or paid for apps with your calling credit. The interface like all other applications is user friendly, fast loading and well presented.
The Camera app is an important feature. The camera has another app linked to the camera which is the flashlight. People can adjust the flashlight from off to very bright and this can add to the quality of the pictures taken. The camera has a built in automatic focus. In addition I also liked the ability to share pictures easily on social networking sites. People can take normal photographs but what is an added feature is the front camera which allows people to take self portraits. The front camera is very useful as it avoids guesswork of the end result. The quality of the camera is very high due to having 8 Mega pixels and also having a HD screen. Gone are the days of a poor focus or not so good pictures. I was very pleased by the camera and camcorder feature on this phone. Another impressive feature of the camera is the ability to use the zoom feature at the top of the screen.The zoom is also on the Camcorder.
Camcorder is an app where people can take videos of anything that you can video. The app is fast loading and has a simple red circle button where you can record. The quality of this feature is excellent in my opinion as like the camera the results are stunningly clear.
Calculator again requires no introduction as to what that is. The phone has a good big display of numbers and key functions in normal mode, but when tilting the phone to the side, it brings up another feature of some scientific calculation buttons such as the square root, co sign, tangent etc. This again would appeal to the wider community of people wanting a reasonably good calculator feature.
The Call history shows a scrollable list of people who you have phoned and calls that have been received. This makes the accessibility re-contacting a telephone number very easily. I found it very easy to scroll up and down the list of phone calls.
There are 2 reasonably good games that are installed in the name of Dice and Teeter. I liked the graphics and presentation of the games and Teeter is a good skill game which provided me with some challenging moments.
People can use the mirror app to have a look at themselves at anytime they use this smart app. Also a very important app is the People app whereby you can view your favourite contacts. The location app is also interesting because on my phone it displayed my location to within 1 house number. This app displays my home address details which I did not have to enter myself. After 1 week of usage my exact location was recorded and displayed. This app is linked to a sat navigation map which is another good quality and well presented feature. Also within the location app I can view businesses and places of interest that are in my local area.
I also found the presentation and clarity of the e-mail apps to be very good and clear indeed.
Facebook and Twitter social media networking sites are also included and these too are easily accessible and well presented.
Friend Stream is another app where I can view my friends that I have added on twitter. This app displays the latest messages from my friends on Twitter.
People can also use Maps, Navigation and Google Latitude in finding where they are located. These apps show the road they are on and the surrounding areas.
The Music app also adds to the sound and entertainment experience as there are eight installed tracks. In addition, I found it easy to transfer music files from my computer where I have a small iTunes library of tracks to this phone. This gave me a good feel for the sound quality which was really good.
There is News and Weather app which is interesting because it displays the latest news. This reduces the need to buy a newspaper in the morning. It would suit a lot of City professionals and people who enjoy keeping up to date with the news. Again the display of the news is first class and pages load fluidly and effectively. The news and weather app displays the headlines of the latest news, top stories, U.K news, sports and entertainment articles.
I had some fun in transferring some of my Office documents to this mobile phone. I was quickly able to use the Polaris Office software which enabled me to access business programs such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint. I was able to use Excel well. The keyboard in Excel, displayed a full range of symbols and keyboard which would definitely suit the business professionals. From my experience I could read and edit Word documents, making this a very smart phone indeed.
SoundHound is an interesting feature where you can find your music. The software was reasonably accurate. It did require on occasions repeat requests before the correct artist was successfully located. However, with perhaps more practise and better pronunciations this will become refined to improve the success rate. I played some music from my computer and it could not find any close matches to the song I was playing and looking for.
Separately the weather app on this phone is simply amazing. A key feature of this super phone is the weather app.
People also have a voice recording app which records conversations and speech. The interface displays the record button along with a play button. and if you have more than one speech file recorded, there is a button also that enables you to find the file that you want to listen back to.
Another more interesting app for me, is one called Watch. Here people can watch trailers to some films and there are loads of films that can be rented or purchased. I found the prices quite reasonable in searching this facility and having seen a few trailers played on this phone, it is excellent quality.
On YouTube against my Sony Ericsson X8 the sound on the HTC Sensation appears more trebley and is slightly more balanced on the Sony X8. I did notice that the HTC Sensation has sharper edges and is ever so slightly better quality in terms of viewing. In my view, HTC Sensation definitely scores well as a media player, and that is up against the Sony x8.
My conclusion of the apps is that the user interface, navigation display and functionality make this phone truly excellent.
HTC Sensation Test against my sisters iPhone 4
I shall leave a few test results I noticed against my sister's iPhone. Firstly we both signed in to our Facebook accounts and the iPhone 4 lists friends by surname which my sister told me that she liked the HTC Sensation display which is made by first names. Often my sister does not even know her friends surnames. Secondly, the Facebook app on the HTC is also clearer and this makes it easier to find contacts because of the layout. The bolder and richer display on the HTC is quite important.
The speed test showed that the iPhone 4 is marginally quicker when accessing apps such as stocks and YouTube. When I say marginally quicker, I am literally talking around a second or two at most. Therefore albeit having found that the iPhone 4 is slightly faster, I would still place a benchmark the HTC Sensation as a fast smart phone.
Thirdly, the iPhone 4 does not have the app called SoundHound which she said she would like to have.
Regarding the camera and video capabilities, the iPhone 4 does not fully utilize the functionality of the flash, whereas the HTC sensation does indeed provide better quality and clearer photos. The video camera also is better quality on the HTC Sensation. Finally the media volume on the HTC Sensation is louder than the iPhone. Therefore this makes the task when making a mobile phone call, listening to YouTube, music files or the Internet radio even better.
The range of features and apps is quite substantial, makes tasks straightforward
Fast processor combined with a good size memory results in a powerful mobile system
HD display screen means you view Internet in very good quality and can see your pictures crystal clear
The display, when using apps is impressive as I was more than impressed by the image display and presentation of apps such as Facebook, Twitter, and viewing my own e-mails.
The built in Radio installed was disappointing. I could hear approximately 3 radio stations and I had to repeatedly adjust the positioning of my device. However I did download a free app called TuneIn which provided a full list of Internet radio stations and combined with a reliable connection I was able to listen to my chosen radio stations. The quality of the TuneIn app, quickly and easily overcomes the problems of the pre-installed radio.
Some people might find the screen size too big, although I quite liked the bigger size.
- Model Z710e
- CPU Speed 1.2 Ghz dual core
- Platform Android with HTC Sense
- Memory 1GB Internal Storage
- RAM 768 mb
- Size and Weight 126.1 X 65.4 X 11.3 mm, 148 grams
- Display 4.3 inch touch screen
- GPS Internal GPS antenna
- Camera 8 megapixel colour camera with auto focus and dual LED flash
- 1080p HD video recording
- Expansion slot microHC card
Having researched the price of the HTC Sensation, this comes with a price tag at the Carphone Warehouse of £499,99p. Whilst this might seem a bit high, it is not overly expensive and is approximately £100-120 cheaper than the iPhone4. Having seen my sister's reaction to this phone, she was impressed. From an Internet browsing experience the iPhone4 is slightly faster, however from a media perspective the HTC Sensation to a certain extent outclasses the iPhone 4.
Taking the cover of the phone is easy and I saw that the microHC card is 8GB and is tiny. I would have to have a special card reader to use this on my desktop computer. Transferring files to and from the computer is easily done through the cable charger lead supplied. People have to download the HTC Sync software.
The HTC Sensation is a product that in my opinion people should seriously consider buying. For this product is the real deal. It has all the communication services that anyone would ever need. Its fast Internet processor and good memory result in really fast internet services.
The sum of the parts, of this excellent Smartphone justifies the costs involved. This takes into account a wide range of features and apps which can be used on this phone. There is the ability to multi-task to a certain extent and as such is highly recommended.
The HTC Sensation is a feature rich application smart phone that justifies its price tag. I thoroughly enjoyed testing the features on this phone and have come to the conclusion in stating that this is an excellent phone. It is like having a good quality camera, camcorder, media centre and micro computer that fits in the palm of the hand. In my opinion it is superior to the HTC legend and also to my Sony Ericsson X8.
From my experience of using and testing this phone out, in my opinion it will not totally replace desktop computing but it definitely comes near. I strongly feel that it is definitely moving towards that direction. I did like the appealing and inviting design on this phone, and the build quality is excellent. The phone is simple to use and has a user interface that is easy to navigate. Some might say that the screen is big but it is better, making it more appealing to view and to operate the touch screen buttons. My sister who has the iPhone 4 has confirmed this.
Summary: excellent smartphone